We went out to eat with my daughter and husband tonight and on the way back I counted the churches on the 16 mile streach of road home. There were 18 churches that were on this one road. Can you imagine the money that goes to pay the preachers and buy the buildings? That's just one road, there are many more all over town. This is truly the bible belt of the south.
The poorer the community in the south the churchier they are. I spent a year in Arkansas and I have never seen so many churches. We would be driving down a dusty back road exploring the area and there in the middle of nowhere would be a little one room church. Less than a mile farther would be another one.
For some people perhaps. But what I give to my church is from the heart. And what they give me is more than my money could ever equal to. I don't consider it a waste of money at all. Why criticize others for giving to something they feel is beneficial just because you don't agree with it?
You are absolutely right about one's choice to go or not. Some people get a lot of benefit from their church association and it fills a need for them. My wife likes to go to a church and I have to admit that I didn't mind so much going for the year I went with her, I even helped build the church. There was too much bickering among some of the members though. We weren't involved but it finally split the church and finally it went out of business. I noticed it was for sale last week. Most churches that I know are like most other groups, there are good and bad people that attend. I have found that it is a social club with religion as a catalist to calm the soul. If it works for you go for it and enjoy the ride. Who knows, I may try another one or two just to see what they offer, but I doubt it will answer my prayer.
Ken: Is that your granddaughter in the pic you use as your avatar? She looks a real cutie
I live in an area where there are six Protestant denominations, as well as a Kingdum Hall, Mormon Church, Catholic Church and a number of other small worship groups, all within a square mile. Now they are receiving planning applications for a Mosque. Talk about religion being a commodity
There was too much bickering among some of the members though. We weren't involved but it finally split the church and finally it went out of business.
You will find bickering at every church on this earth. Even the good ones. The church is an imperfect reflection of God's perfection. Much like a broken mirror. You can't rely on a broken mirror to give an accurate picture. But it can still reflect beauty even in the littlest shards. Too often we focus on the reflection and not the Truth behind the reflection.
If it works for you go for it and enjoy the ride. Who knows, I may try another one or two just to see what they offer, but I doubt it will answer my prayer.
You are right...it won't answer your prayers. The biggest mistake people make is looking to the church for answers. Jesus never said look to the "church" - apostles or the other people starting up the church in the first century. He said to look to Him. "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father, but by way of me." (Andi's paraphrased version )
I have been disappointed time and time again, by looking at humans and churches. Everyone always is. If you haven't, you've not gone to church enough. LOL! But the reality is that what we experience here is just a stepping stone to better things. It's a pit-stop. It's SUPPOSED to disappoint us and it's GOING to disappoint us. But we can choose to focus on the negative aspects of an earthly church or we can choose to understand it's temporal and there's a Grander Picture to our existence we have yet to see. It's a choice I have to make every day and some days it's not easy. Some days it's all I can do to get out of bed, let alone focus on ANYTHING. But all of that to say that we have MUCH more control than many people think.